Living the Gospel – August 5, 2018

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In last week’s gospel reading we find Jesus teaching a large crowd and realizing that the people have not eaten all day. The apostles find a young boy with 5 barley loaves and 2 fish and bring these to Jesus who gives thanks and distributes the food to the people who eat until satisfied and still have plenty left over. In today’s first reading we see another example of God feeding His people, the Israelites, with manna as they cross the desert heading to the promised land led by Moses. In today’s gospel we see again the same large crowd following Him and Jesus tells them that they are following Him because they are looking to get fed another free meal. Jesus tells them “do not work for food that perishes but seek that which will endure for eternal life.“ And where will we find that they ask and He tells them, “I am the bread of life, whoever comes to me will never hunger and whoever believes in Me will never thirst.“

In our relatively short time on planet Earth, we are bombarded by advertisements about what we should buy in order to be happy. We want to make lots of money, win the lottery, all that and more so that we can buy our happiness. Like the crowd we fail to see how God is trying to teach us that to be truly happy we must follow the teachings of Jesus. Do we really realize that Jesus by dying on the cross opened the gates of Heaven for us? How HUGE is that? We are created in the image of God, both body and spirit. Here on Earth, our bodies want to be fed every day with stuff and we tend to forget our spiritual side which also needs to be nourished. God also created us with free wills. He does not force us to follow or ignore Jesus’ teachings in the new testament. It’s your choice. Jesus is our Good Shepherd, sent by God to show us the way to be truly happy, both here on earth and eternally in Heaven. Since the beginning of this year you have noticed various pamphlets in the pews of St. Stephen-St. Patrick and Our Lady. I have found one entitled “A Call To Joy” by Matthew Kelly to be very good reading . It can also be found at ‘Dynamic Catholic .com’ on the internet.

Thanks be to God

Lloyd Lapierre